Callum Paterson’s former youth boss has revealed that the new Sheffield Wednesday signing was a target for Aberdeen and Rangers before joining Hearts.
Douglas Dalgleish coached the player when he was in his early teens and attached to Tynecastle FC.
Speaking to the Evening News’ sister paper the Sheffield Star the former Tynie stalwart – who stepped down as club CEO last year – recalled a “Jack the lad” figure.
Dalgleish said: “He was not one that would listen as intently as he should do, he had his own mind. You get all different types at a football club like that.
“It was about getting through to him that there was something in his locker and, if he was prepared to work hard, he would be able to climb the ladder.
“Something changed in him as he grew up. At 12 or 13 he was a Jack the lad and thought he knew it all, but he knuckled down, listened and prospered.”
It was also revealed that Paterson had been approached by Aberdeen and Rangers before signing professional terms with Hearts, as scouts from across the country came to watch the talented youngster in action for Tynecastle.
The Dons were keen to snap up the youngster and offered him a one-year deal in their academy, only for Paterson to knock it back on advice from his friends and family.
Dalgleish, who spent 13 years working at Hearts, continued: “Our recommendation was that we didn't think it was a good move for him.
"He was progressing and would continue to do so at Tynecastle, he was a home lad and to move to Aberdeen was not going to suit him.
“So he rejected them. A year later there was quite a few clubs interested, but not including the Hearts.”
Dalgleish alerted Jim Jefferies to the youngster’s availability and Hearts plucked Paterson from Rangers’ grasp as the Ibrox side came close to agreeing terms.
Now 25, the 12-cap Scotland internationalist still keeps in touch with his former club.
Dalgelish continues: “It’s great when you meet them again.
“Whether they've made it in the game or not is secondary, our job was to make them better people. Callum gave us the best of both and we're incredibly proud of that.”